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XC on to state

Members of the TRM XC team pose after the day’s win.

Members of the TRM XC team pose after the day’s win.

The T.R. Miller cross country teams gave a tremendous showing at Thursday’s sectional meet in Montgomery.

The TRM girl’s team exceeded expectations of a fourth place win out of six teams to earn a first place finish while the boy’s team finished third.

Both will represent Miller at the 3-A state meet in Cullman Saturday. The feat is a first for the boy’s team in many years, Coach Rob Atkinson said.

“I couldn’t be prouder of our teams’ performances,” he said. “Everyone gave a great effort. I wasn’t too concerned about the times since everyone ran the race as had as they could and we came out on top.

“The girls were ranked fourth but ended up winning the section,” he said. “This will be the eighth year in a row we’ve had a girls team at state.”

Junior Allie Nelson was first across the finish line in the competition with time of 19:50.41. Nelson, along with junior Tarah Townsend and seventh grader Olivia Blackmon, earned a spot in the top 10 while eighth grader Madison Lum earned a spot in the top 20.

The TRM boys team overcame a tremendous jump to place in the day’s race – a feat Atkinson said was indescribable.

“This boys team is probably the best one we’ve had since I’ve been here,” Atkinson said. “They had to come over 30 points in a five-team race to rank, which is unheard of. I’m not sure that I have the words to describe what they did.

“Those boys laid everything on the line and came up with a third place win,” he said. “When you look and see that there was only six-point difference between them and second place, it puts things in perspective.”

For the boys, Travis Carlson placed fifth with a time of 18:20.90. Other top 20 runners were Micah Flores at 14th, Andrew Pollite at 16th, Tucker McDaniel at 17th and Thailand Mitchell at 19th.

“Those boys had their best times of the season,” Atkinson said of top 20 performers. “Everyone of those teams put forth a great effort.”

Other runners included:

• Tanner McDaniel, sophomore, at 19:56.33;

• Rider Jernigan, freshman, 20:13.79;

• Noah Morris, senior, at 20:37.20, and,

• Joe Luttrell, seventh grader, at 25:03.81.

Girls finish times were:

• Townsend at 22:34.95;

• Blackmon at 22:00;

• Carmen Knowles, junior, 22:50.50;

• Hannah Douglas, seventh grader, 23:41.32;

• Madison Lum, eighth grader, 23:54.27;

• Sarah Byrd, freshman, 24:59.29;

• Samantha Morris, eighth grader, 25:03.60;

• Peyton Baxter, junior, 26:18.48; and,

• Ora Nelson, sophomore, 26:36.55.